Surf’s Up at NorthSouth Books
It might be 15 degrees in NYC today, but in our imagination we’re at the beach! Actually, we’ve been working devotedly on a new favorite title-Surf’s Up! Written by Kwame Alexander (most recent Newbery Award winner) and illustrated by Daniel Miyares (tremendously talented author of Float) – this is a book that really inspired everyone at NorthSouth.
Our enthusiasm was validated with a starred review from Kirkus, who called the book “A warmhearted tribute to reading.” Junior Library Guild chose Surf’s Up as a selection for Spring 2016. And right now we are feverishly confirming events and working forward to this summer, and our Surf’s Up Wowie-Kazowie Summer Reading Parties.
If you’re a librarian and you’ll be ALA, you can get a sneak peek at Surf’s Up on Sunday January 1oth at 3:30, when Kwame will sign a limited number of copies at the Children’s Plus booth #2043.
If you’re not going to ALA, enjoy the book trailer, narrated by Kwame, and guaranteed to take you to a warmer place in your imagination.
A Holiday Gift Guide from NorthSouth Books!
The traditional tales….
The beautiful collections…
For the little fashionista…
Stories to enjoy together….
Happy Holidays from NorthSouth Books!
A Very Special Visitor…
NorthSouth Books was honored by a visit from acclaimed Austrian illustrator, Lisbeth Zwerger. Zwerger came to Manhattan to speak at the USBBY/IBBY Congress in Manhattan, Zwerger charmed booksellers at McNallyJackson Books in Soho and The Strand Bookshop in Greenwich Village. She met with editors from Publishers Weekly and School Library Journal, discussing her work and the new Classic Edition of The Wizard of Oz.On Saturday, October 17th, Zwerger participated in a panel at the USBBY/IBBY Congress discussing Books in Translation, and then delivered a wonderful presentation in the company of two other internationally acclaimed illustrators, Roger Mello and Francois Place, to a packed auditorium. Lisbeth’s humor and insights moved the crowd, and after the presentation she graciously signed books for over two hours.The opening night of the USBBY/IBBY Congress began with a presentation about illustration in Iran, including artwork from Rashin Kherieyeh, author/illustrator of The Seven Voyages of Sinbad the Sailor, There Was an Old Lady Who Swallowed a fly,and Two Parrots. Rashin was described in the presentation as Iran’s “young rebel” illustrator. The winner of the Deutscher Jugendliteraturpreis/German Children’s Literature Prize was also announced during this reception. Three titles published by NorthSouth Books in the USA were nominated for the top prize in Germany, Lindbergh by Torben Kuhlmann; Mr. Squirrel and the Moon by Sebastian Meschenmoer; and Coco and the Little Black Dress by Annemarie van Haeringen. Although the final prize went to another publisher, the three nominations how NorthSouth’s strong commitment to bringing the best international books to the USA.NorthSouth Books sponsored a panel discussion on Books in Translation, with Zwerger, Kherieyeh, and NorthSouth Managing Director Heather Lennon. The panel was moderated by Marianne Martens, professor of children’s literature, Kent State University, Ohio. The panel addressed the difficulties facing books in translation here in the USA, and also the challenges of importing books from countries beyond Germany and France.The USBBY/IBBY Congress celebrates the best books in international children’s publishing. NorthSouth’s Torben Kuhlmann’s debut picture book Lindbergh the Tale of a Flying Mouse was chosen as a USBBY Best Book Book 2015, and featured during one of the panel discussions. Kuhlmann’s new book, Moletown, is out in the USA and has received two starred reviews to date-a very nice reception, indeed.
Summer is here!
We are back from a whirlwind of the Spring tradeshows, starting with BEA at the end of March in NYC and culminating in ALA at the end of June in San Francisco. Book Expo America was an incredible few days, filled with authors and some great interactions with our favorite stores and readers. Author Todd Tarpley dropped by to sign My Grandma’s a Ninja.
And Valeri Gorbachev signed our beautiful new edition of his classic Goldilocks and the Three Bears.
BEA browsers loved our poster promoting our new line of classics, out this Fall.
Before we left for the American Library Association Annual Meeting in San Francisco, author-illustrator Sebastian Meschenmoser arrived in New York, from Berlin. Sebastian’s Mr. Squirrel and the Moon was a Top Ten Indie Next Pick in January.
We were so excited to take him out and about to his events at McNallyJackson Books, at Powerhouse Books, in Brooklyn and to an event at Deutsches Haus at NYU. The kids at McNallyJackson enjoyed the story very much, and were adorably interactive throughout the event. They had opinions!
Finally-onto the plane and out to San Francisco for ALA. 16,000 librarians and NorthSouth Books. It is always a great time. We were also gearing up for a big announcement at this conference!
Sebastian came with us and we visited some of the excellent Northern California stores like Bookshop Santa Cruz, Hicklebee’s, Books Inc, and The Linden Tree. We had some packed conference days, with booth signings and author speed dating. On Saturday afternoon we broke out the champagne and announced new picture book with Newbery Award winning author Kwame Alexander. Surf”s Up, illustrated by Daniel Miyares. We are so so over the moon for this incredible project-a perfect summer reading book, and a fantastic collaboration between two incredibly talented individuals. The book will be out February 2016.
Newbery Caldecott Wilder Banquet on Sunday night. Lots of laughter and some tears, as always. It is always incredible to be in that big room with so many of our colleagues from other children’s book publishers, and so many tremendously creative authors and illustrators who care so much about their work. It is always a great way to that conference. We hope you are all having wonderful summers!
NorthSouth Books has something special on our list for May.
Grandma Lives in a Perfume Village is a gorgeous collaboration between Fang Suzhen, a celebrated Taiwanese author, and Sonja Danowski. Publisher’s Weekly said “Suzhen conveys with tenderness the way Xiao Le understands his mother’s grief and thinks of ways to comfort her…readers who discover it will find that Danowski’s work eases its difficult moments.”- Publishers Weekly
Sonja’s stunning work has been selected several times for the Illustrators Exhibition at the Bologna Children’s Book Fair, and she has received numerous international awards for her art. In 2013, she was honored with a Gold Medal by the Korean Nami Island Illustration Concours. She lives in Berlin.
In Grandma Lives in a Perfume Village, you see her beautiful attention to small detail, and the way her illustrations are so real they almost appear photographic.
Who Do You Love?
Christmas is just behind us, but here in the publishing office we’ve moved on to thinking about our Valentine’s Day titles. In honor of that, we wanted to spotlight two or NorthSouth’s favorite Valentine’s Day books, as well as some great titles from other publishers, to make it a true round up.
There’s No One I Love Like You was created by Stefanie Dahle, a bestselling European illustrator.
Her work is whimsical and warm, with rich colors and tons of delightful details on each page. Little Brayden Bunny is grumpy, and is pretty sure that everyone else has it better than he does. But when he goes out into the wide world, he realizes that there’s nowhere like home and no hugs and kisses like his mommy’s hugs and kisses.
A Kiss For You is a charming little board book that celebrates kisses. If there is someone you’d like to kiss, then first take aim or else you’ll miss. For further instructions, take a look inside this let-me-kiss-you book!
“Many of us take kisses for granted. This book reminds us that kisses are precious, and it celebrates the way in which kisses bring people, and animals, together.” – Children’s Literature Review
If you click here
you can view an electronic reading copy of this title, for a limited time. We hope you enjoy it!
Other favorite Valentine’s Day titles that come highly recommended from us, even though they aren’t published by us, are pictured on the top image of this post. We hope you’ll find the perfect book to read with your little lovie this Valentine’s Day!
NorthSouth Books…Ready for the Holidays!
We are preparing for a stellar holiday season here at NorthSouth. We’re really proud this year to offer a gorgeous selection of gift books, plus some fun, new advent calendars. First up, Thanksgiving! Christopher Manson’s Over the River and Through the Wood (9780735841918, 14.95) has been a holiday staple here at NorthSouth since it was originally published in 1994. This rendition is available in board and paperback, but we are also offering an absolutely gorgeous paper over board hardcover, that Horn Book just raved about in their November/December 2014 issue. “In this reissue, Manson’s vibrant, textured illustrations capture the verve and enthusiasm of Child’s well-known holiday poem, feeling as old-fashioned as the original 1844 verse and yet timelessly festive.”
Maja Dusikova is one of our favorite illustrators any time of the year, but several of her books really shine at Christmas, including her bestselling Advent Storybook (9780735819634, 17.95). This year, she has lovely new book, What the Shepherd Saw (9780735841901, $17.95), which pictures the miracle of Christmas through eyes of a doubting shepherd. Merry Christmas, Davy features Eve Tharlet’s adorable Davy, the little rabbit who loves to help out. School Library Journal said “Davy fans will not be disappointed in this story…” and the simple message of sharing is spot on for the season. One of our favorite US illustrators, the late Ted Rand, created a wonderful edition of The Night Before Christmas (9780735841062. 17.95), that we are thrilled to bring back into print this year as beautiful, jacketed hardcover.
Lastly, we have a funky new advent calendar that goes in a very different direction from the usual glitter covered village scenes–we still love those–but In the Woods (9780735841963, 7.95) is a bolder, more abstract take on the advent calendar from the Berlin based design team, the Golden Cosmos.
In a further case of life imitating art, author Torben Kuhlmann will visit the United States in May, and we are sure he will become a sensation, just like his brave little mouse. Events are planned at McNally Jackson Bookstore in Manhattan, The Smithsonian Air and Space Museum in Washington, DC and at the Book Expo America—the biggest bookselling conference in America. The book will be on sale May 2014, and reviews to date have been simply smashing! The Huffington Post called it “Perhaps the most visually stunning book of the year…” and Elizabeth Bird of Fuse #8 Production Blog at SLJ.com opined that “the sheer beauty of this book is likely to overwhelm the senses.” NorthSouth is overwhelmed at the reception Lindbergh is getting here in the USA!
Hooray for Hello Mr. Hulot!
We were excited to publish David Merveille’s enchanting Hello Mr. Hulot this fall. Inspired by the classic character created by French film maker Jacques Tati, the book follows Mr. Hulot’s adventures in Paris and beyond. Tati and Mr. Hulot have quite the cult following, but the reception to David’s beautiful artwork has been quite wonderful! The book received a star from Kirkus, just before the American Library Association Annual Meeting in June. We were then notified that it would be a Junior Library Guild selection, which is a wonderful seal of approval–the JLG is quite a distinguished organization! Just this past week, The Horn Book let us know that Hello Mr Hulot will receive a starred review in their January/February issue. And this morning we woke to a fabulous article on the Huffington Post, naming Hello Mr Hulot as a honorable mention for the Best Picture Books of the Year list. Hello Mr Hulot is a great example of how a book builds…one great review that came at the right time brought the book into focus at a great gathering of librarians. An enthusiastic staff that kept recommending the title. Junior Library Guild sharing with their network. The good news and reviews keep percolating…and now, several months later… good things are still happening. We’re so proud of this book, and so grateful to David Merveille for having the vision to bring Mr. Hulot to the page!
ALA Annual-Chicago 2013!
We had a tremendous trip to Chicago for the ALA Annual Conference. NorthSouth always has a great time at this conference, but this time we did things a bit differently and the changes made a big difference. The biggest difference was that this year we were very lucky to have Ute Krause attend.Ute is the wonderful author illustrator of several books for NorthSouth. Oscar and the Very Hungry Dragon, Nick and the Nasty Knight, and the upcoming No Ordinary Family. On Friday night, we made the trek out to Book Stall Chestnut Court in Winnetka, IL, one of the lovely suburbs of Chicago. This fantastic store held a Sleepy Storytime event for Ute, where she read her books for a bunch of adorable children who showed up in their pajamas. One little girl knew all the twists and turns to Ute’s books–she was a most adorable addition to the reading. And then we had cake. The next day, ALA started with a bang and one hundred and fifty librarians lined up at the NorthSouth Booth to meet Ute. Ute didn’t stop until everyone had a book. It was an overwhelming crowd and we were so happy to be able to introduce Ute to so many fantastic librarians. The exhibits were quite lively, and there were so many amazing authors hlnicuteattending the show. The first day is always a bit overwhelming! On Sunday, we had another day of exhibits and meetings, and a plan for Ute to sign at Baker and Taylor’s booth, where one hundred librarians lined up for signed copies of her books. That night we all attended the Caldecott Newbery Wilder Awards Banquet. Jon Klassen gave a fun and touching speech on his win for This Is Not My Hat. We were especially thrilled for Jon, as our parent company, NordSud Verlag, published This Is Not My Hat and several of his other titles in Germany. This ALA, aside from having an author join us, our publisher and associate publisher came from Switzerland to check out the ALA action. They were not disappointed! Herwig, our publisher met many extremely engaged librarians and was able to share a look at some of our upcoming 2014 titles. Andrew rolled posters like a champ. Nick Miller (publicity) and I (sales and marketing) kept things running smoothly, bringing Ute to meet people, meeting librarians and talking about books until we were hoarse! The best news is that we all left completely enthused for the next ALA, coming up the January in Philadelphia. Hope we see you there! –Heather Lennon, Publishing Director
Happy Mother’s Day!
Mother’s Day is about to become a very special day in my household. Not that it wasn’t special before this year—growing up, I’d always made sure to have a card signed and ready for my Mom—but this year is different. This year, my wife and I welcomed our first little one into the world, and my wife, who has been a fantastic mother of three bad cats, will now be a fantastic mother of one bad baby boy. It’s times like these when I especially love working in children’s books. This spring, NorthSouth Books is publishing not one, but three (!) picture books that celebrate mothers. In January, we published There’s No One I Love Like You (9780735841260). Author Jutta Langreuter teams up with illustrator Stephanie Dahle for an amazingly adorable picture book. Brayden Bunny doesn’t like it one bit when his mommy asks him to wash his ears and clean his room. Chores, chores, chores. What to do, then? Naturally, he decides he has had enough of mom’s rules, and he is going to move in with his friends. In the end, Little Bunny discovers the truism that there’s no place like home—even if you and your mom do occasionally disagree. Kirkus says that ‘readers will relate to Brayden’s [Little Bunny] experience’ and ‘develop a better appreciation for the comforts and rules of home.’ We are reissuing Little Bunny’s Sleepless Night (9780735841239) in June. Bestselling author-illustrator duo Carol Roth and Valeri Gorbachev first published this picture book with NorthSouth Books in 1999. Publishers Weeky wrote that Little Bunny has ‘a breezy style’ that was ‘right on target for a merry bedtime tale,’ and I am so excited to bring this back into hardcover. Little Bunny, an only child, is so lonely that he can’t fall asleep. If only he had the company of a good friend. But when Little Bunny tries to spend the night with each of his buddies—Squirrel, Skunk, Porcupine, Bear, and Owl—he soon discovers that his own bed near his mama is best. This past February, we published Mama Hen’s Big Day (9780735841093), a picture book both written and illustrated by Jill Latter. Mama Hen is just about ready to lay her egg. But where would be the best place to settle down with that egg? Cats and hedgehogs and even snakes seem to take up the very best spots. Finally, Mama Hen realizes that the best spot for her egg is under her wing, providing a mother’s warmth and love, wherever that may be. Kirkus praises Mama Hen’s Big Day for its ‘brisk pace,’ making it just perfect for moms and their youngest readers. These won’t be the only three gifts that I’m giving for Mother’s Day, but they’re certainly a good start. Nick Miller, Publicity
C’mon, Get Hoppy!
One of the greatest things about being an editor with NorthSouth Books is getting to read such diverse stories from around the world. I recently had the great pleasure of working on our new release, 999 Frogs Wake Up. This story has that indelible blend of artistry from another country (in this case, Japan) and universality that lets us all really connect with a story. When the 998 froglets wake their sleepy big brother, I was totally reminded of the loving, yet mischievous pleasure I felt in doing the same to my big brother. And who doesn’t love being led on a quest by a beloved older sibling? In this playful picture book, big brother leads his little brothers and sisters to find more sleepyheads to wake up. Sibling rivalries are put aside as all join forces to engage in theplayful search—looking under rocks and leaves. It’s here that I feel a subtle and beautiful influence from Japan…in the gentle reverence for nature as the froglets discover a sleeping turtle, lazy ladybugs, and a drowsy lizard and perhaps most of all—in witnessing the sleepy turtle’s gratitude in being awakened in time to see the blossoming cherry trees. It’s simply gorgeous. Then, as with any good older sibling-led adventure, things get interesting. Ken Kimura and Yasunari Murakami once again bring their loveable little creatures face to face with a feared enemy—in this case, a big red snake. Just like in 999 Tadpoles, also written and illustrated by this talented team, a surprising solution is found in the nick of time that saves the day. It’s mom and the grateful turtle to the rescue. When the snake asks, “Is it time for a nice meal?” momma frog says in almost ‘Jedi mind shift’ style, “Not yet, you can sleep some more…” Then, like any good and true friend, the sleepy turtle offers to take the snake away, deep into the woods. 999 Frogs Wake Up is a joyful, humorous story–filled with sibling camaraderie and the perfect balance of discovery, adventure, and friendship. I hope you enjoy it as much as I did. Beth Terrill, Editor
Celebrating Twenty Years of The Rainbow Fish!
It’s hard for all of us here at NorthSouth to believe that it’s been twenty years since the original book was published. The special effect that created Rainbow Fish’s iridescent scales contributed to an instant publishing sensation. Marcus Pfister’s story of the little fish who wasn’t perfect resonated with readers and reviewers alike, and that’s why it’s endured for twenty years. “I wanted someone children could sympathize with—Rainbow Fish has faults and makes mistakes, but he learns from them.” Marcus Pfister said, when describing his motivation for writing The Rainbow Fish. The Rainbow Fish went on to be the 1993 Christopher Award Winner, an IRA-CBC Children’s Choice, winner of the Bologna Book Fair Critici in Erba Prize, and more importantly…it won hearts everywhere! The Rainbow Fish became an animated television series, and now it can be seen in a touring musical production. Twenty years later, it is one of the first books that children in the United States read when they kindergarten. Every year, we are sent pictures of some fabulous crafts that the kids create, depicting Rainbow Fish. On October 1st, the latest book in the Rainbow Fish series went on sale. Good Night, Little Rainbow Fish goes back to the beginning, when Rainbow Fish was a baby and still needed his mommy to go to sleep. We have a sparkling celebration planned to tie this new book into the twentieth anniversary. Visit us on our facebook page to stay current with all of our offerings, including book giveaways, downloadable coloring pages, and a selection of glittering games and stickers and finger puppets to enhance the Rainbow Fish experience.